Last week, U.S Navy divers played an important role in helping retrieve a large section of a Civil War ironclad ship from the bottom of the Savannah River, according to the Maritime Executive. The 64-square-foot piece of history was lifted from the shipwreck of the CSS Georgia, which was sunk in 1864, the article explained.
A barge and crane were required to lift the shipwreck piece from the river, because the section is estimated to weigh more than 5,000 pounds. U.S. Navy divers and salvage teams assisted staff archeologists with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Savannah District. The shipwreck section is slated to receive archeological testing.
What’s the History Behind the Shipwreck?
The CSS Georgia was a Confederate ship that was destroyed by the Confederacy when Union troops drew near to Savannah, Ga., so that it would not fall into Union hands. The shipwreck remained undisturbed on the bottom of the Savannah River until 1969 when it was struck by a dredge that was clearing sediment from the shipping channel, the article noted.
Except for a brief salvage effort in the ‘80s that resulted in the recovery of a couple cannons and other artifacts, little has been done to salvage the ship. It is hoped that the recovery of the piece of the shipwreck this month will provide a good idea of the ship’s current condition and spur a plan for the complete removal of the shipwreck, the article explained.
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(Photos courtesy of www.USACE.Army.mil/ by Jason OKane and Billy Birdwell, respectively)
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